Martha exhibited great faith after watching her brother Lazarus die. In John chapter 11, we’re told Jesus purposely stayed away from Bethany for two more days after He was told her brother was sick. He did this that His Glory might be manifested for their benefit (vs. 14-15). In John 11 verses 21-22 Martha said, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You.” Jesus answered her, “Your brother will rise again.” To which Martha said, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
Then Jesus unveiled His Glory to her and said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” Martha then says, “Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.” With that incredible encounter, she goes to her sister who is wrought with grief and shares the news secretly that The Teacher has come and is calling for her. What love and compassion she had for her sister – confronting her friend and Savior about His delay in what seemed to be a heartbreaking catastrophe.
"Martha, Martha…" Sounds familiar doesn’t it? Looking again at the passage in Luke 10, Jesus lovingly rebuked Martha for being worried and troubled about many things. Here in John 11 He reminds her of what He said to her previously concerning the glory of God being manifested. And so they all witnessed the resurrection of Lazarus.
Mary, not saying a word, watched as her brother walk forth from the grave, loosed from the cloth wrapping that enveloped him. This was the same woman who, just a few days later, while dining again with her sister Martha and her now infamous brother Lazarus, brought out a very expensive and ornate alabaster flask containing oil of spikenard, and anointed the Lord (John 11:2). It was the ultimate sign of extravagant giving unto her Lord and Savior as she lavishly doused Him.
Just as she had previously pleased Him by sitting at His feet, and listening to His teaching (by choosing that good part – Luke 10:42), she similarly pleased Him with her gift from a heart of true worship. Jesus said in Mark 14:8-9, “She has done what she could. She has come beforehand to anoint My body for burial. Assuredly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the whole world, what this woman did will also be spoken of as a memorial to her.” John 12:1-11 tell us that it was six days prior to the Passover, that Jesus came to Bethany, had supper with Mary, Martha and Lazarus, and delighted in Mary’s act of worship as the house was filled with the fragrant oil.
Mary and Martha were not unlike many others who served the cause of Christ throughout the generations that followed His death. Women have a special place in the Heart of God. There are Marys and Marthas in our congregations. We all know someone that exemplifies service and hospitality to the Body of Christ, as well as prayer warriors and worshipers that reside in His Throne room.